Crawford Race Cars Leads the Pack at Homestead Test Finlay Motorsports Ford Crawford fastest during two-day test Denver, N.C. (December 7, 2007) . Crawford Race Cars, led by the ...
Crawford Race Cars Leads the Pack at Homestead Test
Finlay Motorsports Ford Crawford fastest during two-day test
Denver, N.C. (December 7, 2007) . Crawford Race Cars, led by the #19 Finlay Motorsports Ford Crawford, posted the fastest overall speed during the two- day Grand Am Rolex Sports Car Series test at the Homestead-Miami Speedway this week. The test was the second of three scheduled "off-season" sessions for the Daytona Prototype and GT cars in preparation for the 2007 season.
A total of 36 cars participated in the test with 21 Daytona Prototypes and 15 GT cars entered. With two sessions each day, the action on the track, and in the garage area, was fast and furious. At the end of both days, the #19 Finlay Motorsports Ford Crawford piloted by Michael Valiante stood atop the speed chart. On Tuesday, Valiante turned his fastest lap, 111.664 mph, late in the afternoon session to capture the top position. On Wednesday, the Canadian once again blistered his fastest lap, 112.068, late in the day. His lap of 112.068 mph was the fastest overall lap of the two-day test.
The combined overall test results show four Crawford DP03 Daytona Prototypes in the top eight. The #51 Porsche Crawford from Cheever Racing, driven by Tommy Erdos, was fifth fastest at 111.717 mph, followed by Andy Wallace in the #20 Howard Motorsports Pontiac Crawford at 111.652 mph. The #23 Alex Job Racing Porsche Crawford ranked eighth with a speed of 111.307 mph. Needless to say, the test results were pleasing to Andy Scriven, Chief Designer of the Crawford DP03 Daytona Prototype.
"I think it was a very good test," Scriven stated. "The cars that we had there all went quickly. The Finlay Motorsports car driven by Michael Valiante was quickest on both days. So, it's quite pleasing when our customer cars run well. Our other customer cars, Cheever Racing and Alex Job Racing ran very well. The Howard Motorsports car had limited testing at Homestead, but did well. We had a few different pieces to try, and we're working very hard with the new Bosch system and the new Hoosier tire."
"As a company, we're very happy with what we learned," Scriven continued. "We'll take that information and use it when we get to Daytona. We also had the Dyson car down there, and the effort and their performance was very pleasing. We don't run that car that often, but I think the results from Homestead were very good for them, and they can look forward to a good Daytona."
"The GT program we had at Homestead was with two very new cars," Scriven added. "We've still got a steep learning curve with them, but I think the fact that both cars tested and had no major problems is a plus. There were a few little glitches, but that's to be expected with new cars. We were extremely happy with the performance of the Mustang in its first time out. The Blackforest Motorsports Team was very happy with the car and their performance showed that. We learned quite a lot with the Infiniti with Andy Wallace, Terry Borcheller, and Johnny Mowlem driving the car. We need more time with this car, but it's going to be good. We're a little green with GT cars, but we came away from Homestead knowing what we need to do. We feel strongly that we'll be ready when we get to Daytona."
Max Crawford, President of Crawford Race Cars, echoed many of Scriven's thoughts about the Homestead test.
"I'm ecstatic," Crawford said. "I'm very happy that a Ford, Porsche, and Pontiac Crawford all ran at the front during these sessions and having four in the top eight overall is very satisfying for our company. I'm very pleased with that performance. After the earlier Daytona test, we went back to our Denver, North Carolina shop and worked very hard on our overall program, and the performance showed the fruits of that effort. Daytona was all about the new Bosch system. We spent two days working that system out. Homestead was much better, and I feel we have a better handle on it. That translates into better performance with our cars."
Perhaps Scriven described the test best. "We really came out of Homestead with a lot of optimism. We've still got some more ideas to work on before Daytona. We have a high degree of optimism that all of our cars will be running very well at Daytona, and that Crawford Race Cars will be a strong contender "
The next test for the Rolex Series cars will be at the Daytona International Speedway on January 4-6, 2007. And, if the Homestead results are any indication, look for Crawford Race Cars at the top of the speed chart.